Population Weiz 11,700 inhabitants; Conurbation 20,000
Strategic site 100 ha - Project site 4.8 ha & 19 ha extended project site
Site proposed byMunicipality of Weiz & Federal province of Styria
Actors involved Municipality of Weiz & Federal province of Styria
Owner of the siteMunicipality of Weiz & Province of Styria
Commission after competition Framework plan and design guide for urban space
Team representative Architect - urbanist - landscaper
How can the site contribute to a productive city?
Weiz is exceptional. In contrast to other regional cities it is booming: the economy is strong, the population is increasing, jobs are being created and buildings and research institutions are expanding. Many exciting new projects have recently been realised or are in the pipeline. However the biggest project of all is the new mobility artery which is currently under construction and includes a rail track for commuter trains, a road, a bike path and several footbridges. Profound changes will result from this enterprise. The E15 site - that runs in parallel to the axis - looks at the overall scale of this unique transformation. The city’s ambitious plan is a visionary strategy, which fosters inventive typologies and new forms of businesses along with potential synergies knitted into the existing framework.
Enormous building activities have taken place in the last few years and many more are planned. The new mobility artery is a chance for further growth attracting both developers and inhabitants. The city has designated various target areas for development already. However the overall scheme is missing. Now is the time to act in order to propel all these development activities in one great visionary and innovative direction. The new artery runs straight through a long stretch of the municipal area of Weiz. It is parallel to the old country road which was always the main street of the village. The city now expects a shift from one axis to the other, changing the traditional main route through Weiz. What potential arises out of the new situation for the old street and its neighbouring spaces?
This unique site will shape the whole city at a time of great change. For generations a fascinating urban fabric of single longitudinal strips has formed together with a small river and main roads. Longitudinal axes are dominant. The new mobility line continues this trend, strengthening the formation. Crossing transversally you experience many diverse atmospheres. With the shift from one axis to the other the purpose of the existing road will change. The potential for cross-connections therefore becomes substantial and together with new forms of innovative typologies and pilot projects an explosion of possibilities for all city users can be generated. Europan looks at the greater picture but will use vacant spaces as starting points for its proposed visionary strategy.
How is production inserted in the urban diversity programme?
The city of Weiz is embedded in a network of neighbouring villages. The new artery connects Weiz with Graz, the Styrian capital 45 minutes’ drive away, and with the surrounding region as well as improving connections in the city itself. Three stops are planned in Weiz, making it the first project of its kind facilitating access by bringing trains into the village. Business already has a strong presence in Weiz. In total the city provides 11,300 jobs. However trade, industry and craft are only found on a small scale. A tiny creative scene is establishing itself around the main square. As an education centre Weiz has access to the future generation - a unique opportunity! With a breeding ground for pilot projects, start-up clusters and innovative working typologies young people could be attracted to stay. Smart mobility concepts are already in place supporting this idea. Europan will connect the existing with the new and deliver ideas for resilient synergies. The main challenge lies in the consideration of multiple aspects, including nature, economy and community. A complete strategy for a sustainable city is needed and individual interventions across the entire field should be proposed in order to anchor and concretise the project.